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Discussion in 'Interfaith Discussion' started by lewisnotmiller, Jun 8, 2021.

  1. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
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    ...or philosophical viewpoint, or author of thoughtful thoughts.

    So...I'm not looking to 'convert' or anything like that. Over various times in my life I've devoted a little effort in studying religions, or in schools of thought and philosophy, or even just more generally thought provoking books. I kinda do this to some degree all the time, but sometimes I try to focus more on a single area for a couple of months, and get a bit more in depth understanding, or at least read and study more widely than I normally would.

    I'm interested in both religions or philosophies you think I may be interested in (easier for those who've conversed with me, I guess) and also suggestions of useful materials if you have any. I'm trying to get an outsider's perspective, here. Whilst 'living as an x' is a useful way to a deeper understanding, I'm not really putting myself up for that, at least at this time. Life is challenging enough, and my wife already thinks I'm half mad.

    No need for me to 'believe' in the religion to do this, obviously, but for this time around I'm kinda tossing up a couple of things.

    1) Non-Western schools of thought and religion I can approach in terms of structure and concepts. (Possibly more concepts than structure). What are the schools of thought, what is the daily life of an adherant like, what is the history of the religion, how has it evolved, developed and split over time. To be clear, on these topics I am at a pretty basic level of understanding, so any materials suggested would need to be novice level, really, at least in terms of concept. History, etc, can be more complex and in depth.

    2) Polytheistic and pagan belief systems, both in terms of what is known about the classical belief, and how some of these are incorporated in modern beliefs. Anything historical in this area I already have a decent handle on, I would say, so I'd be looking for pretty in depth information on old beliefs, stories, rituals and life styles. Modern pagan beliefs are much less known to me.

    I'll trundle along in my own way regardless of responses to this thread, since I tend to always have some sort of academic reading on the go at any point in time. But I thought some people might be able to provide me with some thoughts or directions I hadn't considered, or some useful references to some I had.
     
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  2. Orbit

    Orbit I'm a planet

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    Search youtube for Alan Watts. He's a great explainer of non-western philosophies.
     
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  3. MatthewA

    MatthewA Active Member

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    I would recommend @lewisnotmiller a "Knife to a Gun fight; Misinterpreting the Purpose and place of the New Testament" by Shawn A McCraney

    It is 7 dollars and about 294 pages long. Here is the website for you to buy it add; Sorry for the advertisement but you asked
    Knife to a Gun Fight – Heart of the Matter

    I have the book myself and the things here are all of the chapter names

    1 . Shooting dogma in the head
    2. The bible club
    3. To whom, to whom, From Where and Why
    4. An invitation
    5 Demoninational Authority ( my own note here he is against this)
    6 Five Solas
    7 Subjective points of view
    8 The Spirit is primary and preferential
    9 The Utter Allure of the Tangible
    10 "How Beautiful are the feet"
    11 Queries
    12 Three Main Factories
    13 Scattered considerations
    14 Dating Revelation (but not marrying her)
    15 The Gospel of Christ saves
    16 What is the good news
    17 Baptism? That is an easy one
    18. Which is it?
    19 The books of the early church
    20 Erasmus
    21 Erasmus and Luther
    22 Thank you Sola Scriptura ( my own note here : which he is against)

    Here is one statement he makes in the opening of the book :

    When it comes to teaching and sharing insights about the Word of God every presenter has to ask themselves, "Will I focus on and promote false hope or will I choose to promote unadulterated truth?" Promoting hope builds religious empires; presenting truth comes at a very high price.
     
    #3 MatthewA, Jun 8, 2021
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2021
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  4. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    Dharma is a common Eastern concept that could be explored.

    For Hinduism, I learned quite a bit through the lives and teaching of recent figures. I found the lives of Ramakrishna Paramhamsa and Ramana Maharshi to be a good approach to classical lives in India. There are videos of Ramana Maharshi on youtube.

    For a transitional perspective, I'd recommend Sri Aurobindo and the Mother .

    Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj was a more recent figure and exponent of advaita (non dualism). Also I found Papaji to be an entrancing and illuminating figure. There are videos of both these people.
     
  5. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
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    You may deeply enjoy the Great Courses Plus video series about The Analects of Confucius. Confucius is the first, the founding thinker for many later Chinese philosophies such as Taoism. Most other philosophers comment on him or are merely extending his concepts. A cursory reading of him makes him sound oxymoronic, but he is teaching. He contradicts himself, so this confuses people. It confuses me. I don't own a copy of The Analects, but I intend to read them some time. They are something that you read and then must assemble in your mind, not something that is perfectly organized. I recommend checking out the first video.
     
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  6. Viker

    Viker Filia Diaboli, in a shroud of metaphor and mystery

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    Jain·ism
    /ˈjāˌnizəm/

    noun

    a nontheistic religion founded in India in the 6th century BC by the Jina Vardhamana Mahavira as a reaction against the teachings of orthodox Brahmanism, and still practiced there. The Jain religion teaches salvation by perfection through successive lives, and noninjury to living creatures, and is noted for its ascetics


    Jainism - Wikipedia
     
  7. The Hammer

    The Hammer Well-Known Member
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    Comparative Mythology by Jaan Puhvel is a good one, about the similarities linguistic and otherwise of the Proto-Indo-Europeans.
     
  8. Viker

    Viker Filia Diaboli, in a shroud of metaphor and mystery

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    Mandaeism or Mandaeanism, also known as Sabianism, is a monotheistic and Gnostic religion with dualistic cosmology. Its adherents, the Mandaeans, reject Jesus, Moses and Muhammad as false and revere Adam, Abel, Seth, Enos, Noah, Shem, Aram, and especially John the Baptist.

    Mandaeism - Wikipedia
     
  9. Viker

    Viker Filia Diaboli, in a shroud of metaphor and mystery

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  10. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Be your own guru

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    Nice, I respect it. Their devotion to non-violence is second to none. But it has quaint cosmological beliefs about heavens and hell, and karmas and reincarnation; including one that suicide will erase karmas (Sallekhana, Santhara). They encourage even under-teens to become monks, though I have not heard of an infant being made a monk. Then a lot of living and food restrictions. For these reasons it is restricted to about 5 million people in India.
     
    #10 Aupmanyav, Jun 8, 2021
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2021
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  11. Viker

    Viker Filia Diaboli, in a shroud of metaphor and mystery

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    I had an uncle that left the Hare Krishna movement and later adopted much of Jainism.
     
  12. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Be your own guru

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    1. I follow strict Advaita (non-duality) which leads to atheism. It goes step-in-step with science. It is devoid of structures, it breaks all structures. Advaita has origins in BCE, it was reinforced by 8th Century religious leader, Sankaracharya. There are milder variants of Advaita which accept a Supreme Soul, mostly Krishna.

    2. Hinduism arose by the amalgamation of Vedic religion and indigenous religious thoughts. Hindu polytheism is alive and kicking, and constitutes the majority of Hindus. We have no count of our Gods and Goddesses, Shiva, Vishnu, Rama, Krishna, Mother Durga, Ganeshs, Kartikeya / Murugan are the main deities. There are thousands of stories connected with each of these deities.
     
  13. Heyo

    Heyo Well-Known Member

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    The obligatory hint at Douglas Adams. I guess you've read (or seen) "The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy"? Have you read it as though it was a philosophy book?

    "Gödel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter
    It's more about western thinking and "strange loops". It's not only for computer nerds but if you are one, you'll enjoy it.
     
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  14. sayak83

    sayak83 Well-Known Member
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    One stop website for Buddhism
    A Handful of Leaves - Library
     
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  15. sayak83

    sayak83 Well-Known Member
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    Please note this is in the discussion section of the forum.
     
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  16. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
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    Quick note to everyone.
    Thanks for the tips, I've found this quite informative and appreciate your efforts.

    Definitely just looking for brain prompts rather than 'answers' and this has been great.
    Keep them coming!
     
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  17. Viker

    Viker Filia Diaboli, in a shroud of metaphor and mystery

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  18. Secret Chief

    Secret Chief Meghalayan Ape

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    Unless you can provide support for this I have to say I believe you are incorrect, both in regard to influence and in Daoism coming later. The two have existed side by side for two thousand-ish years and are not concerned with the same areas. The focus of Confucius is on the external: on public duty, relationships, moral behaviour and the maintenance of civil society. Daoism is focussed on the inner life, on mysticism, on being one with nature and on metaphysics. The supposed author of the classic Daoist text the Dao De Jing, Laozi, apparently met Confucius. To use a modern expression, Laozi's philosophy did Confucius' head in. The two are at best complementary and contemporaneous but I seem to recall reading of Daoists being dismissive of the "trivial" matters that concerned the followers of Confucius.
     
    #18 Secret Chief, Jun 9, 2021
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  19. Viker

    Viker Filia Diaboli, in a shroud of metaphor and mystery

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    Lao Tzu = Taoism ( not Confucius) I like Taoism actually.
     
  20. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    How about starting at the beginning LnM? [​IMG]

    Was Life Created?
    https://wol.jw.org/en/wol/library/r...ns/brochures-and-booklets/was-life-created-lc

    Everything after that is a step up.... :D
     
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